In theaters since Wednesday, “Ticket To Paradise” brings together the duo George Clooney-Julia Roberts in an idyllic setting. But where was this romantic comedy filmed?
Ticket to Paradise of Ol Parker
With George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Kaitlyn Dever…
What is it about ? An estranged couple come together to try to stop their daughter from making the same mistake they once did: giving in to love at first sight.
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Ticket To Paradise was specially written for George Clooney and Julia Roberts. Moreover, in a first iteration of the script, the characters were called Julius and Georgia, a nod to the two stars. The director underlines: “This film had to look like the sequel to a film that would never have been made. This couple had to seem familiar to us, that we had the impression of finding them again”.
The duo had already given the reply in Confessions of a Dangerous Man, Money Monster and Ocean’s Eleven and Twelve. Ol Parker simultaneously sent them the script whereas it is customary never to suggest the name of an actor to another without being sure to have his prior agreement. “I didn’t follow that protocol, because I was only considering them. It was very clear from the start that the movie wouldn’t stand a chance if they didn’t star in it. I wasn’t considering any plan B “.
Ticket To Paradise is a production of Working Title, to which we owe in the 90s and 2000s the biggest romantic comedies of this era including 4 weddings and a funeral, Love at first sight in Notting Hill, Bridget Jones’s Diary and Love Actually.
Tim Bevan, the president of Working Title, believes that Ticket To Paradise is a real booster shot of the genre that launched them at the time. “It is true that Rom-Coms have been a bit out of fashion lately and when Ol Parker and Sarah Harvey came to us with their pitch, we said to ourselves that it had been a long time since we had done any more and that it was still worth it, because these are films that attract a very large audience.
Sources of inspiration
She’s the producer Sarah Harvey who offered to Ol Parker, with which she had already worked, a possible screenplay, inspired by the story of one of her divorced friends. She and her ex-husband had tried to intervene in the relationship of their daughter who planned to marry on a whim with a virtual stranger.
For writing the screenplay, Ol Parker and the screenwriter Daniel Pipsky used a quote as a guiding idea: “the opposite of love is not hate, but indifference”. They therefore ensured that there was never any indifference between the two protagonists. The director underlines: “They are always looking for each other, provoking each other, exasperating each other and this energy which circulates between them is a form of passion, since everyone knows that the death of passion marks the departure of love.”
Filming in Australia
Part of the filming was planned in Australia and the other in Bali, but due to the pandemic and the confinement, Bali had become inaccessible. Ticket to Paradise was finally filmed in the fall of 2021 in Queensland, Australia.
A blessing in disguise given that Australia has bigger infrastructure for filming of this size, as well as public film funding support from local government and film production support strategies at the regional level, which is very attractive for foreign productions. Also, there were very few Covid cases in Australia at the time. Later when the lockdown was lifted there, a team was sent to Bali for the missing plans.
Respect Balinese culture
In order to best respect the Balinese culture in which the story is immersed (although the film was not shot in Bali), the technical team embarked on a lot of research, advice and consultants. Pak Agunq Pinhdathe cultural consultant, took care to explain the different local wedding rites, their different stages and their significance.
He took part in all the decisions that were made during the filming of the film, from the ritual details of the wedding, to the sculptures and decorations, to the food and the traditional Babi Guling (the roast suckling pig with skewer and stuffed with spices and ginger) or the details of the Metatah ceremony (the filing of teeth, one of the 5 ceremonies that every Balinese Hindu must have performed to ensure the transition of his spirit from birth to death and later reincarnation).